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Timberwolves lock down another center, reportedly re-sign Naz Reid for three years, $42 million

Naz Reid

Naz Reid

Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

The Minnesota Timberwolves were already locked in paying Karl-Anthony Towns and Rudy Gobert a combined $77 million to play center next season. Still, they liked Naz Reid too much to let him get away.

The Timberwolves re-signed Reid to a three-year, $42 million contract, a story broken by Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN and confirmed by Jon Krawczynski at The Athletic, who added the third season is a player option.

Getting this signing done now keeps Reid from hitting free agency next Friday. It also shows how much Reid wanted to stay in Minnesota — he could have signed elsewhere as a free agent and been assured more minutes, but he chose to stay and back up Gobert and Towns.

Reid — entering his fifth season out of LSU — is a favorite of the NBA analytics crowd. Even using traditional stats he put up good numbers, 11.5 points on an impressive 61.7 true shooting percentage with 4.9 rebounds a game last season in just more than 18 minutes a night. If you roll it out to a per-36-minute average he is at 22.5 points, 9.6 rebounds and 1.5 blocks. Reid missed the end of last season and the playoffs with a fractured wrist but is expected to be ready for training camp.

There were good reasons to re-sign Reid, but that is $91 million committed to three centers for next season in Minnesota. It is going to be difficult — especially starting in the summer of 2024 when the full weight of the new CBA comes down on big spending teams — to continue to spend that much on centers and round out the roster, especially with Anthony Edwards’ max extension coming this summer and kicking in for 2024-25.

The Timberwolves are going to have to shake things up, but for now they have Reid locked down.